The Bigger Picture

It’s fair to say that life doesn’t always feel good. The last few years, honestly, have felt like one thing after another.

Image: a closeup shot of a chess board, one piece has fallen. Text states: Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist "Sometimes things have to fall apart to come together."
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A few weeks ago, I received an intuitive hint, to periodically look at my life from a bird’s eye view. On the ground, it’s hard to see that things will soon improve. We see the traffic, we get frustrated, and feel like things will never get better, but from an aerial view appearances are different.

It may look to some like I’m winning, but few people post their losses. Honestly, my adult life has felt like one traffic jam after another. I’ve gone from struggle, to setback, to loss, to drama, with few moments of free flow in between. I just refuse to wait until all roads are clear to make an impact.

I don’t know about you, but for me traffic is a million times worse when I have complaining passengers. It’s easier to talk myself into being positive when no one else is affirming the negative. This is why my quiet, meditation time is so important for me. (I even just ordered some ear plugs on Amazon to drown out household noise. 🤫)

When I can get quiet and still, I am able to remember that despite appearances I’m still in route to my destination. If I don’t give up, and keep inching along, I’m going to arrive.

When I remember that the traffic is temporary, and that I get to find joy no matter where I am, I turn up my music and dance in my seat. Sometimes when I’m having a challenging day, I put on some music, lock my door and freely dance. And on days where it’s too much and too overwhelming, I take a break, or a nap. It’s just like I do in traffic. If it’s taking too long, I give myself grace, put the car in park and turn off the engine. I know eventually, we’ll get moving….

My perspective in challenging times is really important as well. I believe that life’s challenges prepare me to better understand the needs of those I will serve. I don’t necessarily believe that things have to be bad before they get good (or whatever that phrase is). I just believe that I have a purpose, and occasionally I go through things so I can fully understand the depth of the issues—the impact, the mindset, the hurts, the needs, and what counts as a triumph—for the people I am here to support.

Mindset is everything, especially in tough times. Despite the losses, struggles, and drama I’ve been through—including this year—I am still very clear that I’m not losing. It gets hard sometimes. My closest friends know the challenges I deal with on a daily basis, as well as the potholes I’ve swerved, and hit. Even so, I’m still moving forward.

As we go through life, it’s important to remember that we can’t see how the game ends because we’re in it. At times we feel like we’re losing left and right. Sometimes all our inner work is not yet reflected in outer change. We’re doing our best, but our lives still don’t look ideal.

Today, these words came to me, “Sometimes things have to fall apart to come together.”

These words are comforting. They help me remember to resist the temptation to assume my outcome based on today’s appearances.

It may appear that our lives are falling apart. The struggles, the setbacks, the losses, and the drama can be so consuming. Without a bird’s eye view, we have no idea what good could be around the corner. We may not be able to see it right now, but we could be one move away from winning.


Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist

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Published by Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist

Marlene Dillon is the CEO of MDillon Designs & Publishing. I teach girls to believe in themselves and choose relationships that support their goals. I teach children that their dreams are possible and that they are lovable. I teach parents to communicate with their children in healthy ways. In short, I.U.S.E. people. Inspire. Uplift. Support. Empower.

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